The current Coronavirus pandemic is affecting all aspects of our lives, NSW is currently home to the greatest number of confirmed cases, sitting at 382 out of Australia’s approx. 700 cases. The uncertainty and threat surrounding COVID-19 Is having a flow on effect as social distancing ramps up, sectors such as travel are effectively shut down and the share market faces sharp falls.
The federal government announced a number of initiatives for businesses in a federal economic stimulus package last week (read more about this here). States have now followed suit and announced their own stimulus packages to support the measures initiated by the federal government.
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian spoke on March 17th about the threat of COVID-19 and the impacts of the new social distancing regulations and limitations on indoor and outdoor gatherings on the economy, small businesses and individuals who may suffer underemployment or loss of jobs. Berejiklian announced an NSW stimulus package to the total of $2.3 billion, which involves several measures to assist both the health care industry and boost the economy.
NSW Treasurer Dominic Perrottet said the packages will help businesses struggling with the outbreak of COVID-19:
“We are supporting businesses by lowering costs through tax cuts and fee reductions and working to boost jobs by funding ready-to-go capital work and maintenance projects as a priority,” Mr Perrottet said.
Boost to Health Industry:
– Around $700 million extra funding has been allocated to NSW Health, this will go toward
o doubling intensive care unit capacity,
o purchase of additional ventilators and medical equipment,
o facilitating additional COVID-19 testing and purchasing test kits
o Establishing specific acute respiratory clinics for the care of severe COVID-19 patients
o Bringing forward elective surgeries to private hospitals to ease the burden on hospitals
Boost to Businesses & Jobs:
$1.6 billion is being pledged to support the economy, keep people in employment and support small businesses to try and avoid major closures.
– Payroll Tax waived:
One of the major significant measures is $450 million allocated to waive payroll tax until the end of financial year for small businesses (those with payrolls of up to $10 million). It is expected these exemptions will be applied automatically but we will update you further if differing information is received.
– Payroll tax cuts brought forward
Upcoming payroll tax cuts will see the payroll tax threshold rise to $1 million in the financial year 2020-2021.
– Boost to employment:
$250 million has been pledged by the government to employ additional cleaning staff for public industries to improve hygiene and reduce COVID-19 risk factors in public spaces such as public transport, schools and other public buildings. Further, $250 million will be spent on fast-tracking the maintenance of public assets e.g. public housing and fencing.
$500 million is also allocated to bringing forward several planned capital works and maintenance.
Not only will this improve public spaces and help limit the spread of COVD-19, it will also provide a boost to self-employed people in these industries and small cleaning and maintenance companies.
– Fees Waived
NSW government has allocated $80 million for scraping select fees and charges that apply to vulnerable sectors including bars, cafes, restaurants and tradespeople. It is unclear which fees will be waived; more information will be communicated through Service NSW.
If you have any queries or concerns surrounding this NSW stimulus announcement or the previous federal economic measures and how they may affect or boost your business, please contact us so we can assist you through this challenging time.